What do a geologist, a 3D designer, a salesman and a coffee roaster have in common? Bikes, of course.
- Last year, Shane Matson and Kevin Aufdenkamp purchased intellectual property and designs for the Put Up bike rack from a business in Durango, Colo., and relocated it to Bentonville.
Why it matters: Put Up is another example of cycling-centric businesses driving a subtle, but noticeable, economic and cultural shift in Northwest Arkansas.
- Matson said the decision to locate the business in NWA was logical: "It's the mountain biking capital of the world."
- Once they decided to locate the business in NWA, they added two more partners: Mark Bray, owner of Airship Coffee, and Vincent Edwards, an instructor who also runs the 3D Advanced Technologies Lab at the University of Arkansas.
Details: Put Up Bike Solutions makes heavy-duty vertical racks for high-density bike parking (think: cities, businesses, universities).
- The company also recently introduced a plywood rack system, called the Up Lift system, ideal for apartment living.
- The systems are sold through its website and directly to contractors. One recent sale was to an architect working on a U.S. Air Force base in Albuquerque.
What's next: The group currently outsources its fabrication work — all done in NWA — but is looking to build its own shop here sometime this year.
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